How to Hide on Facebook

- June 9, 2009

Okay you really can’t hide on Facebook.  It is, after all, a social media site whose sole purpose is to help you share information.   You purposely connect to other people and invite them in to view a piece of your life.  That said, there are some tools available to help you separate your friends from your “Facebook friends.”

So log-in to your Facebook account, go to “Settings”, select “Privacy Settings”, and let’s get started!

You’ll have four options here and I’ll take them one at time — with the exception of Applications — which I’ll handle in another post.
 
1. Profile

There are a lot of options here and they may not all be obvious.  To combat that, Facebook gives you a great tool to help you determine the impact of any changes. 
See that box on the top that reads: “See how a friend sees your profile.”  You can enter any friend here to see your profile as it would appear to them.  Now you can tweak the settings and have a real world example of how it impacts your friends or “friends of friends” and your network. 

One important item here is the link to “Edit Photo Album Privacy Settings”.  Once you enter here, select “customize” and you can prevent friends (or your boss, mom, etc.) from seeing that photo from your party on Friday night.

2. Search.  

If you are in hiding, then this is the tab that you’ll want to focus on.  Facebook allows you to determine who can find you on Facebook and whether or not people can find your listings in the search engines.

So if you have a stalker or are in the witness protection program, uncheck “create a public search listing” and the box to share your picture in search results.  You’ll also want to select “search visibility” and limit who can find you in an internal search by selecting “Only Friends”. 

3. News Feed and Wall

If you like to post comments that are private and meant for one person, then compose a new message via your mailbox!  But if you want to comment on a thread or photo and don’t want everyone to know via their updates and notifications, then you’ll want to come here and uncheck the options for the highlights section.

Facebook does provide some useful tools to help you manage your privacy, but it’s important to remember that you (and some of your information) are visible in the search engines and internal searches on Facebook by default. So if you’d like to be a share a little less of your life online, use the privacy settings and make adjustments until you are more comfortable with what you show your Facebook friends.

Posted in: Facebook

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